On Christmas Eve, we sang a mighty hymn of joy – Joyful, Joyful, We Adore Thee. The words are words of hope as we end a troubled year and look forward to a new one.
The hymn, written by Henry Jackson van Dyke in 1907, speaks to the joy in the Christian that cannot be destroyed. When Henry van Dyke was asked about the song lyrics, this is what he replied:
“These verses are simple expressions of common Christian feelings and desires in this present time — hymns of today that may be sung together by people who know the thought of the age and are not afraid that any truth of science will destroy religion, or any revolution on earth overthrow the kingdom of Heaven. Therefore, this is a hymn of trust and joy and hope.” 1
His words give evidence that the maladies of this life are common to all and in all ages, but the hope born of our Lord is available to His children forever.
I have taken the liberty of highlighting some of the words below. May God grant you peace and joy and hope as you read this hymn of praise.
Joyful, joyful, we adore Thee, Lord of Glory, Lord of Love. Hearts unfold like flowers before Thee, opening to the sun above. Melt away the sin and sadness, Drive the dark of doubt away. Giver of immortal gladness, fill us with the Light of day. All Thy works with joy surround Thee Earth and Heaven reflect Thy rays. Stars and Angels sing around Thee, Center of unbroken praise. Field and forest, vale and mountain, flowery meadow, flashing sea, chanting bird and flowing fountain call us to rejoice in Thee. Mortals join the happy chorus, which the morning stars began. Father love is reigning over us, Brother love binds man to man. Ever singing, march we onward victors in the midst of strife. Joyful music leads us sun-ward in the triumph song of life.
Psalm 5:11 But let all those that put their trust in thee rejoice: let them ever shout for joy, because thou defendest them: let them also that love thy name be joyful in thee.
Psalm 95:1 O come, let us sing unto the Lord: let us make a joyful noise to the rock of our salvation.
Colossians 1:10 That ye might walk worthy of the Lord unto all pleasing, being fruitful in every good work, and increasing in the knowledge of God; 11 Strengthened with all might, according to his glorious power, unto all patience and longsuffering with joyfulness; 12 Giving thanks unto the Father, which hath made us meet to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in light:
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